Both THC and CBD can be extracted from cannabis using a variety of methods, including alcohol, butane, propane, CO2, ethanol, R134a, and water. However, not all of these methods are created equal. Some of these methods infuse harmful chemicals into the product, while others degrade the terpene profile, destroying the entourage effect.
Of all of the extraction methods, CO2 is the most common. It doesn't leave behind any harmful chemical residue, but the terpenes and the cannabinoids, such as delta-8 THC, must be extracted separately. CO2 extraction can negatively impact the beneficial entourage effect. Moreover, it's a long, complicated, and expensive process.
A newer extraction method uses a tetrafluoroethene gas known as R134a. This is the same gas used as a refrigerant in air conditioning units and studies conclude that exposure and inhalation are generally safe.
We proudly use the R134a extraction method to create our line of quality, full spectrum delta-8 products. Read on to find out why our delta-8 THC extraction process creates a pure delta-8 THC product that is truly satisfying.
The Advantages of Using R134a to Extract Full Spectrum Delta-8 THC
Unlike other extraction methods, R134a does not affect the terpene profile of full spectrum delta-8 THC. This means that pure delta-8 THC extracted with this method truly is full-spectrum. It retains all of the aroma and flavor that you would expect from a pure delta-8 THC product.
Unlike CO2 extraction, R134a extraction can be done in a single pass, and at room temperature. Also, very little specialized equipment and training are needed, unlike CO2 extraction. This not only creates a safer product for consumers but also creates a safer environment for those working in the cannabis industry. Not only that, it's been deemed safer for the overall health of the planet.
Moreover, using R134a to extract cannabinoids does not infuse water-soluble compounds like mold or pesticides into the product. That also increases the safety of pure delta-8 THC products made using the R134a extraction method.
While the words tetrafluoroethane and R134a sound very scientific, rest assured, it's safe to use as a cannabinoid extraction technique. Using R134a results in a pure delta-8 THC product with intact terpenes and a full-spectrum entourage effect.
What is the Entourage Effect?
So far, we've mentioned the term “entourage effect” several times. You may know what that is, but if you don't we'll explain it now.
Cannabis plants contain many, many compounds, such as cannabinoids like CBD, delta-8, and delta-9 THC. Like all plants, cannabis also contains fragrant and flavorful essential oils known as terpenes. The unique combination of terpenes is responsible for the unique flavors and fragrance of cannabis, but also of any plant.
While terpenes do not get you high, they can influence the effect that THC and CBD have on the mind, emotions, and body.
For example, many cannabis strains are rich in terpene myrcene, which is known to reduce anxiety and promote relaxation. Other cannabis strains are rich in limonene, a terpene known to promote alertness. These are just two common cannabis terpenes that can affect the type of high a user will experience.
Common terpenes found in cannabis include:
- Beta-caryophyllene: This terpene helps reduce feelings of depression and anxiety. You'll also find this terpene in cloves and rosemary, thus, it adds a unique flavor to any cannabis extract.
- Beta-pinene: This terpene is responsible for the pine scent and flavor that some strains of cannabis have. It's also reputed to reduce feelings of depression.
- Caryophyllene: This is the only terpene that also acts as a cannabinoid. It has a spicy flavor and scent, and it's also found in spices like pepper, cloves, and cinnamon.
- Humulene: This energizing terpene can also be found in the healing root ginseng.
- Limonene: As the name suggests, this terpene has a lemony scent and flavor. It's also reputed to help reduce feelings of anxiety.
- Linalool: This terpene gives lavender its healing scent, and it's known to relieve stress.
- Myrcene: This terpene is also found in mangoes and other fruit. It has a musky, earthy smell, and is reputed to have a sedating effect.
The subtle combination of terpenes is responsible for the different effects various cannabis strains have. This is the “entourage effect”. For example, the Kush strains are high in caryophyllene, myrcene, and limonene, with hints of linalool, pinene, and humulene. This unique combination of terpenes is partly responsible for the deeply relaxing high that Kush strains are known for, as well as the unique Kush fragrance and flavor.
What Does Full Spectrum Mean?
Full spectrum Delta-8 THC, as well as other full spectrum cannabis products, contain the full spectrum of both cannabinoids and terpenes. For example, full spectrum CBD and other hemp-derived products, such as delta-8 THC, may contain up to 3% delta-9 THC, since hemp plants do contain tiny amounts of delta-9.
THC products using the R134a extraction method contain the full spectrum of terpenes and other cannabinoids. Full spectrum hemp and cannabis products mean you'll get the full entourage effect each strain has to offer.
So, decide if you want a relaxing or energizing experience, and then choose your full spectrum delta-8 THC product accordingly. Delta-8 products come in a variety of strains, such as relaxing Bubba Kush, invigorating Lifter, and tasty, euphoric Cherry OG. The variations are due to the different terpene profiles of full spectrum delta-8 products.
The Difference Between Pure Delta-8 and Delta-9 THC
The scientific difference between delta-8 THC and delta-9 THC lies in the chemical structure. The difference lies within where the double bond of the carbon atom chain is placed.
Delta-8 THC has that double bond placed in the eighth carbon atom. On the other hand, delta-9 THC has a double bond on the ninth atom. The placement of the double bond determines how each THC molecule interacts with CB1 cannabinoid receptors in the nervous system, thus, influencing the type of high.
A pure delta-8 THC high is much milder compared to a delta-9 high. In fact, most people who have tried both say delta-8 is around half as potent. While that doesn't sound as fun, some people prefer the delta-8 high. If marijuana and delta-9 THC products tend to make you feel anxious or paranoid, you might respond better to delta-8 THC.
Also, it's unlikely you'll experience lethargy or couch-lock when using pure delta-8 THC. Rather, you'll likely experience a light, happy, creative high. While you'll still be able to function, do not drive or operate machinery while using delta-8 THC. While the high is light, you'll still be under the influence.
Full Spectrum Delta-8 THC is Legal in Much of the United States
Before you order full spectrum delta-8 THC vape cartridges or gummies online, check to make sure they can be shipped to your state. While more than half of the states consider pure delta-8 THC legal, almost half do not. Furthermore, the legality doesn't always seem logical; for example, recreational weed, which contains delta-9 THC, is legal in Nevada but delta-8 products are not. Delta-8 is legal in Texas, but recreational marijuana is still banned. So, the legality of delta-8 THC does not seem to be tied to the fact that it can get you high.
In conclusion, before you buy any full spectrum delta-8 THC product, make sure it can be legally shipped to your state. Also, be sure to choose a product that was made with the R134a extraction process. This will ensure that you receive a full spectrum delta-8 product. Finally, decide the type of high that you want to experience, and choose your strain accordingly.